Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Are Atheists Being Politically Persecuted?

One presidential hopeful is a preacher, another proudly Mormon, and most openly tout their Christianity. In an arena where faith can make or break a politician, the one in 10 Americans who profess no religion feel left in the cold.
"They're very disconcerted," said Darren Sherkat, an atheist sociology professor specializing in religion at Southern Illinois University
"They're horrified by both the Democratic and Republican rhetoric surrounding religion -- that people who are not religious ... are immoral, that they're not qualified to serve in public office," he said.

The article goes on to outline the story of a 25 year old named Ian Thomas who ran for the school board and was sideswiped by an email sent out by a County Council member concerning a bumper sticker on Ian's car that promoted atheism as well as a letter to the editor endorsing atheism. Thomas stated that [he was] very, very insulted.

The small-town incident was part of a wider pattern of "disenfranchisement" of non-believers, according to Margaret Downey, president of the educational organization Atheist Alliance International.
She claims atheists are "the fastest-growing minority in America."
But they are also "the least tolerated group by conventional standards of religious toleration in the US," Sherkat said.

You can read more here.

Some questions:
-Should Christians take part in persecuting atheists?
-What should be the response to persecution (of any kind) by Christians?
-How does this affect your view of atheism? Christianity?
-Why does one assume the County Council member is a Christian?
-Does this adversley affect others besides Christians and Atheists?

1 comment:

Timm said...

Go to Turkey atheists and count your blessings.